BNP Paribas plans to raise two new property funds and has recruited Chris Carter Keall, formerly head of UK funds at Valad Property Group. BNP Paribas Real Estate’s investment management business has launched a pan-European real estate fund called Next Estate, which will focus on green office buildings.
The company also plans to launch a UK balanced property fund for overseas investors, which it is believed Carter Keall will help to set up. The investment manager hopes that Next Estate can raise up to €500m of equity, and a source said that €200m has already been committed ahead of its first closing, scheduled for Q2 2010.
With leverage of up to 40%, the fund could have total spending power of €800m. The core vehicle will target 9% returns and provide regular distributions greater than 5%. Carter Keall left Valad last year after the company’s listed Advantage Property Income Trust (TAP), which he managed, was taken over by Robert Ware’s Conygar in a £28.8m deal in September.
At BNP Paribas, he will be a senior director in the bank’s investment management division and will help to expand the group’s pooled vehicles. Carter Keall will report to John Claxon, head of investment management, and is working on a number of new ventures, which are thought to include the launch of the UK investment fund.